New ad for Apex shows a fallen Olympus

The city in the clouds looks significantly lower these days.

Image via Respawn Entertainment

The trickle of information and teasers for the coming season of Apex Legends, Defiance, is continuing to roll out.

A launch trailer is scheduled for Thursday, Jan. 27. But in the meantime, eagle-eyed observers noticed a new advertisement on Instagram that revealed a possibly ominous fact: Olympus might be falling.

The advertisement only provides a brief glimpse at some of the changes in store for Olympus, but it seems pretty clear that the floating city is now significantly closer to the surface of the planet Psamathe since a cityscape is clearly visible below Olympus. The new season 12 skybox for Olympus has been a big topic of discussion among members of the development team. And now, it’s pretty clear to see why.

Artist Marcos Shih has been the mastermind behind the skyboxes over Kings Canyon, World’s Edge, and Olympus, including the season nine Olympus update that featured the lost fleet that the Icarus belonged to and the crawling Medusa vines that spread from them. Now, it appears he has a new take on the world outside of the battle royale maps, with an urban environment replacing sprawling, atmospheric clouds.

It’s not immediately clear if Olympus is actually falling or if the map has simply moved closer to another one of Psamathe’s luxurious cities. But it stands to reason that this dramatic shift for the map has something to do with Maggie’s impending arrival to the games, as well as the previous dogfight teaser on Storm Point. That dogfight ends in a blown-up ship blinking out of the map with something that looks an awful lot like the phase tech used by Wraith, as well as the Phase Runner found on Olympus. Perhaps an emergency phase and landing on Olympus, safe or otherwise, has caused the city to lose some of its self-supporting functions? Maybe the Medusa vines from season nine took a greater toll on the city’s infrastructure than we previously thought? Or, perhaps, someone from the Syndicate just wanted a better view?

Whatever the reason, the “new view from Olympus” teased by the Defiance season splash page is already living up to the hype. And if Respawn and Apex know how to do one thing, it’s create a compelling reason for such a drastic visual change. The new season also promises even more map updates that players can actually reach and fight in and around, unlike the new city below Olympus. Stay tuned for the season launch trailer on Jan. 27 for even more details.